Thursday, November 25, 2010

For What Are You Most Grateful This Year?

"Gratitude is heaven itself." ~ William Blake

Thanksgiving is often a day to reflect on and share the aspects of our lives for which we are most grateful / thankful. This year has been interesting -- sometimes exhilirating, sometimes challenging, sometimes unexpected.

I had an "A-HA!"moment last evening, reminding me to be grateful / thankful for all of my experiences. It can be helpful to remind ourselves that we are shaped by all of our experiences. It can be so easy to focus on the things that haven't worked, or didn't go the way we wished -- and lose sight of the lessons and insights we've gained. On a higher plane, things are the way they're "supposed" to be.

I am grateful / thankful for this opportunity to reflect on this, and ponder my other sources of gratitude. Here are a few:

I'm always so grateful / thankful for my parents, whose unconditional love is an unspoken source of support and comfort. And, I'm grateful / thankful for the ability to still spend time with them.

I'm grateful / thankful for my friends, whether near or far; many fun memories that can be a great pick-me-up on a challenging day.

I'm grateful / thankful for my clients, whose needs I always hope I am meeting.

I'm grateful / thankful for my global travel and encounters this year -- reinforcing my belief in affirmations and mantras ("global" was one of my 3 Words for 2010).

I'm grateful / thankful for my home and all of its comforts -- even if there are things I'd like to change or improve.

For whom / what things are you most grateful this year?

Feel free to share your thoughts here or tweet me on Twitter.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

NEW Podcast: Get Paid What You're Worth Even in the New Normal

Has the New Normal impacted your ability to negotiate for money?

The message we're receiving about money in today's economy is that it's TIGHT! Consumers are scrutinizing every purchase; and, managers are still nervous about spending. To get ahead, you must be able to demonstrate the ROI and value-add of any additional resources.

The GOOD news, I've just recorded a new podcast to help you! It's my conversation with Kathleen Kingsbury, founder of KBK Wealth Connection. In this podcast, Kathleen and I discuss how you can master your money psychology, and increase your ability to negotiate for what you're worth.

Whether you're an employee preparing for your year-end performance review, a job seeker getting ready to land your next job, or an entrepreneur planning to close your next deal, this podcast has great tips for you!

Kathleen, a certified professional coach and author of Creating Wealth from the Inside Out Workbook, helps clients to bravely look at their relationship with money and to make lasting financial, behaviorial changes.

One money psychology strategy we discussed on the podcast is to figure out which aspect of your brain you typically use when you're negotiating or discussing money: your emotional mind or your rational mind. This will help you understand how you're responding to the other person. Listen to the podcast for the series of questions Kathleen recommends you ask yourself before these conversation.

As always, I want to hear your feedback about the podcast. Feel free to tweet me your money success stories (or challenges) on Twitter. And, if you'd like to share part of your Dear Money Letter here, please do so in the Comments section!

Here's to all of us gettin' paid in 2011! :-)

Monday, November 15, 2010

Shop 'Small' at InStep on Nov. 27 - Get $25 Back

Did you know: For every $100 spent at a local business, $68 returns to the community?

This year, Saturday November 27th is the first-ever Small Business Saturday -- a day to support the local businesses that create jobs, boost the economy, and preserve neighborhoods around the country.

If you're an American Express cardmember, you have an even better incentive to participate: a $25 statement credit when you spend $25 or more at a small business. To participate, you'll need to register your American Express card by November 27th at

Then, visit our Online Shop to purchase one of our career development or wellness tools -- either for yourself or as a great holiday gift for a friend or family member! By shopping "small," you'll achieve HUGE results from our practical, holistic resources.

Please help spread the word, and shop online on Saturday, November 27th!

Thanks for your support!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Do You Know What You Don't Know?

Five years ago when I began writing this blog, I told you why I believed focusing on your competent advantage TM was a great way to build and sustain your career. I've since learned that my "attraction" to competence may have something to do with me being a Type 3 according to Enneagram ... but more on that another time.

My fascination with competent advantage TM also comes from my work in Human Resources / Training & Development, observing how managers have used competencies to determine:
  • Who gets hired
  • Who gets fired
  • Who gets promoted
  • Who gets training - and on what skills/topics
In today's New Normal, I think there are benefits to "going back to basics" to revisit this theme of competence. One framework about how we learn that has always intrigued me was proposed by renowned psychologist Abraham Maslow - known as the Four Stages of Learning. I've listed the stages below with some insights to help you consider each stage, and how it might relate to your learning and achieving your goals in light of recent challenges/changes:
  1. Unconscious Incompetence: "I don't know what I don't know." You don't even recognize that you need to learn how to do something.
  2. Conscious Incompetence: "DING! Lightbulb goes on!" Now, you've just realized that you need to learn how to do something.
  3. Conscious Competence: "I know that I'm doing it." You've just started to learn how to do it, and you're very aware as you keep practicing to get better at doing it.
  4. Unconscious Competence: "It's a no-brainer!" You don't even think about it anymore -- you do it automatically whenever needed.
In today's New Normal, I believe it can be very helpful to use this framework to prepare yourself for new experiences, and figure out the best (and, perhaps, the quickest) ways to learn new things or enter new industries and markets. Here's a brief activity to help you:

Think about one skill or talent -- something that you do very well. Then, ask yourself four questions below to help you recall the four stages (insert your skill/talent in the spaces):
  1. How did you realize that you needed to learn how to _____________________?
  2. How did you find out what you needed to know/learn about _______________?
  3. How did you practice and improve your ability to ___________________?
  4. How do you _______________ now -- in ways that you don't even think about?
When I begin a new project, if I feel any anxiety about it, I ask myself similar questions to recall other times that I've been successful doing it. This not only boosts my confidence, but helps me think of tips, techniques and methods that worked before that I may be able to use again. Does this make sense to you?

So, do you know what you don't know? How will you figure out how to learn it? Share your comments, thoughts and reactions here -- or tweet me on Twitter.

Monday, November 08, 2010

What's Your 2011 Success Plan?

Does it seem a bit early to be talking about 2011 goals? Not really, if you think about it. Once the holidays are underway, you'll be thinking about LOTS of different things. So, why not take some me-time now to begin planning your 2011 Success Plan.

Of course, everyone has their own definition of success -- at work and at home. Our team measures its success by the degree to which we help YOU meet (and exceed) your professional and personal goals. You know we believe in offering POSITIVE, PRACTICAL, and STRATEGIC solutions to help you succeed in today's New Normal.

Let's make a deal -- if you tell me more about your 2011 goals, I'll let you know how I can help. I've created a brief survey to get a better sense of your priorities.

Can you put aside 10 minutes this week to answer 10 questions that will jumpstart your 2011 Success Plan? At the end of the survey, you'll find out how you can arrange an introductory call with me to review your plan and see if it's a right "fit" for us to work together on achieving your goals.

I believe it is possible to create a career and life plan that aligns with your interests, talents and values. It just may not be as linear as you'd originally imagined. I think we're all beginning to learn and accept that lesson as we continue to navigate today's New Normal. What do you think? As always, comment here or tweet me your thoughts, challenges and success stories on Twitter.

Thursday, November 04, 2010

How's Your Want-To? Get Inspired for FREE through Nov. 30

Have you been looking for a little boost these days? Or, searching for insights to keep you motivated as you continue to navigate today's New Normal? Good news -- right now, there's a FREE online Leadership & Influence Summit happening! Originally scheduled to end today, the event has been extended through November 15th.

This online event features brief, inspirational and informative videos from over 30 of the top experts on business and leadership including: Marshall Goldsmith, Michael Gerber, and Keith Ferrazzi. And, they're all "on-demand" so you can watch them on your own time, at your own pace.

I first learned of the program from my good friend, Kevin Carroll (8/31!!!!), who is also part of the Summit. His presentation is about how we can maximize our Human Potential. The great thing about Kevin, though, is that he keeps it real and shares insights from his lessons on the playground and from his grandparents.

I had the wonderful fortune to meet and travel with Kevin during my work on the Turning the Page leadership development training for public librarians. His keynote presentations inspired me every single time I heard them (over 25 times). And, I must admit, that recently I've had to check my "want to"-- that's his grandfather's expression for passion and drive -- as it's been a little worn down. Yes, even the Coach has to do some soul searching every now and then! Kevin reminded me that I am courageous by staying committed to building my business even in the uncertainty of today's New Normal.

Listening to Kevin on the Summit has helped. I also discovered a new potential inspirer, Jon Gordon, whose video is about Positive Leadership. His soup analogy made me recall my grandma's macaroni and cheese -- it wasn't the type of cheese she used that made it so good, it was all the love that was baked in.

When you have the chance, take a look at the videos on the Summit, and let me know what are your favorites! You can share them here, or feel free to tweet me on Twitter (their hashtag is #landisummit).